Apart from the giant dragons that resided in the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley, there were plenty of powerful magical beasts like wyrms among them. They might not be comparable to the T-Rex that Bella had beaten to death, but their combat strength is definitely stronger than regular magical beasts. Even if the Dragon Race was still in their prime, these giant dragons would never allow other powerful magical beasts to appear in their territories, even if it was the Wyrm Race that was slightly related to them. Back when the 12 Demon Kings cleansed the Dragon Race’s continent with blood, most of the strongest giant dragons had already died in combat.
In order to survive, the Dragon Race had no choice but to work together with the Human Race. As for those magical beasts lingering around the outside of the valley, the dragons had chosen to ignore them. By letting them stay, they could also conveniently obstruct those with trespassers. The Octavia Empire might be heavily guarded, but there were a lot of lawless invaders that infiltrated the place. Their objective was the Dragon Race’s hidden treasure, and there were even some audacious individuals who abducted the whelps.
“You will be given three hours of free time later on to search for your fated mounts after you enter the valley. This is the tradition of the Dragon Knights. Student Lisha, you should have already done this before, so I shall not explain the rules. Help me explain it to the other three students. In three hours, it doesn’t matter if you’re successful in getting a mount or not, you will have to get back here.”
“Big Sis… Teacher Ingrid, are there people who come here to secretly hunt?”
“Student Bellina, you don’t have to be concerned. That is a matter that I will be responsible for, so be at ease and pick your mount. You look like you have chosen the Dark Knight profession, right? It will probably be pretty hard to find a dragon mount that is fated to you. You’re going to have to work harder! You should look for deep ravines and caves for dragons that prefer darkness. This is the best time for sunbathing, so they’ll be hidden there.”
Ingrid then gave Bella some simple explanations before going to a military camp not far from here. This place was the Octavia Empire’s garrison headquarters for Bronte Holy Dragon Valley. In order to safeguard the valley, the Octavia Empire garrisoned 20,000 soldiers here to patrol day and night. Despite the case, they were still unable to prevent those robbers from entering the Holy Dragon Valley to steal treasures. The position of the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley had been kept a secret to the outside world, but most of the underground organizations had this intel.
There were still plenty of people who would take their chances to infiltrate this place.
The mount picking ceremony for Bella and the others were actually close to the mount picking for Dragon Knights. Ingrid might not be biased, but her actions meant that she already determined that they were competent enough to be Dragon Knights. Bella wasn’t every interested in such ceremonies where she had to find a fated mount. In her Darkness Sacred Region, there were tons of demonic beast mounts that she could choose from. Before Bella registered herself for Olsylvia Academy, the Darkness Sacred Region had already produced dozens of Bone Dragons, so even if they failed this selection, she had an alternative route for herself and her female friends.
However, Ingrid mentioned that this region had lawless invaders, so it would seem like she would need her familiar spirit to prevent that from happening.
Octavia Empire, Holy Dragon Valley, in an area of the Bronte isolation forest’s borders…
A squad of a few dozen patrols of Octavia Empire’s soldiers were laying down dead, with signs of blood on the grass patches. It was 3:30 in the afternoon and their entire squad had been eradicated in broad daylight. One must admit that the culprits were truly too professional.
“Shadow No. 26, Boss is going for a big deal this time. He actually wants us to steal treasures from the Holy Dragon Valley!”
“Shadow No. 18, the client’s appetite is very abnormal. The goods that we captured in the Beast Race’s continent still aren’t enough to satisfy them. The Elven Race were hard to find, so they actually spent big money to purchase female Whelp servants. I truly cannot understand the world of those wealthy people.”
“Do we have the Dragon Binding Ropes? What about the other tools? Without those tools, I don’t dare to capture any dragon!”
“You coward! All the tools are with the leader of this operation, Shadow No. 1. Stop your chatter and quickly wear the soldier’s armor to sneak in.”
Beside the Octavia Empire’s patrol squad, there were a few dozen black-clothed men plotting something bad. They were all professional assassins and there were more than a hundred individuals for this infiltration. This was just the follow-up squad, and a vanguard squad had already succeeded in infiltrating the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley.
“Shadow No. 34, where are you? Hurry up over here to change your outfit! Any later… Oh my god, what is that thing!?”
“What happened, No. 28? Did you see a ghost in broad daylight? Is there a need to panic like this! This is… heavens, what is that!?”
The two black-clothed men stared at the bush where their comrade was and all they could see was fresh blood and several severed human limbs. It was needless to say that their comrades were all dead.
“No. 19, over here…”
The unlucky assassin didn’t have time to finish his sentence when his vision shook and he fell to the ground. First, it was the azure blue sky, then it turned into the flat plains, finally darkness. The comrade by his side was astonished, but before he could react, there was a black flash of light as he saw the exact vision his comrade did earlier.
When the infiltrators noticed the anomaly and wanted to retreat, it was already too late. They had been surrounded by horrific dark shadows, and in just a short amount of time, they were all eliminated. These horrific shadows were immune to physical attacks and it wasn’t a surprise that these infiltrators couldn’t defeat them.
A well-endowed loli with blood red hair then walked out from the bushes, accompanied by a very special black shadow. This shadow was obviously of a much higher rank than those shadows that had killed the infiltrators; just the shade of black was unfathomable.
“Mister Shadow Demon Tambour, the way you guys kill is just… isn’t it too excessive!?”
“Your Highness Diaz, you are a demon too, right? Could you possibly have some pity for these humans? If Mistress Bella knew that her dedicated familiar is performing like this, then you’ll be in big trouble!”
“Mister Tambour, I didn’t say anything. Please continue!”
When Demon World Princess Diaz saw the dismembered corpses of the infiltrators, she couldn’t bear to see it. She might be a Demon World’s princess, but people from the Demon World didn’t have the habit of dismembering their victims’ corpses after killing them. This time, she’s the dedicated familiar of Demon King Bella, and this was the first time she went into battle with Bella’s other demonic subordinates. She sighed at her own incompetency upon seeing such horrific killing methods. As one of Bella’s familiars, she was clear on her whereabouts. Bella had come to Bronte Holy Dragon Valley to pick a mount. To prevent any mishaps, Bella used the contract between the master and the familiar demon to make a spiritual connection that easily connected to her.
According to Bella’s instruction, Diaz had brought along Bella’s demonic beings and used the familiar’s special abilities to transport a massive army of shadows to this place. Once they arrived, they coincidentally bumped into the black-clothed people that were hiding here.
As a result, an inevitable slaughter had occurred.
“Princess Diaz, did Mistress Bella convey any latest orders to us!?”
“She did. Let me recall the orders in my mind first! Got it, it goes like this. First… you all will secretly… protect this person, and this person, and that person!”
After Diaz deciphered Bella’s orders that she sent by telepathy, she had a dumbfounded expression on her face. Bella had actually ordered her subordinates here to secretly protect some girls! Lisha, Irene, and Luce were all on the protection list. This Demon King was seriously not behaving appropriately. She ordered so many demonic beings just to be bodyguards!
Diaz initially assumed that Bella called them here for a huge battle.
Octavia Empire, in the garrison headquarters of the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley.
The table was seated by over a dozen high-ranking officers from the Guards Legion sent by the Octavia Empire to deploy to this place. When there weren’t any special situations, these officers wouldn’t normally gather in this place. Now that so many of them were gathered here, something must have happened. Ingrid’s position in this camp was just an officer without any authority. If it wasn’t for the fact that all the legion’s upper echelons were here, she wouldn’t even bother to participate!
“Officer Gould, the supervisor team of the patrolling squads has reported that the patrol squads that we arranged on the outskirts have been assaulted by unidentified people. There are already more than a hundred casualties. Please decide if you want to impose emergency measures before informing the Empire to send reinforcements.”
“Let me think about that… Officer Ingrid, what do you think?”
The commanding officer of the Berkeley Base Camp was Officer Gould. Although his military rank was much higher than Ingrid’s, he was a mediocre individual. He naturally didn’t have any definite opinions in such emergency situations. More than a hundred individuals had been taken out without any known cause. If they were to report this to the Octavia Empire, and if the Emperor found out, he could kiss his commanding officer position goodbye and be forced to go back home and be a farmer again.
All the officers under Gould were naturally of the same level of goods. At times like this, they had to ask for assistance from capable individuals like Ingrid. As a Knight, he was too terrified. He had a garrison of 20,000 soldiers, but he was actually stirred up by infiltrators that only numbered a few hundred. If he considered it even a bit more, he should have noticed that there might be a spy from the infiltrators in the garrison. Otherwise, how could an afternoon infiltration be so successful?
“Send some men to strengthen our defenses. I will personally lead a group to capture these infiltrators!”
“Officer Ingrid, you are just an officer without authority! It is not appropriate for you to lead the soldiers, right!?”
“That’s right, Officer Ingrid, we are a bunch of grown men here. If we let you, a woman, lead the troops, wouldn’t others treat us as a joke when this news travels out!?”
A huge group of officers stood up and opposed Ingrid’s proposal. They were obviously all upper echelons that had secretly taken the bribe from the infiltrators. They knew that if they allowed the inflexible Ingrid to handle this matter, it would definitely be troublesome.
“If that is the case, you will go handle it! I will patiently wait here for my students to return. Officer Gould, I will dismiss myself now. I’ll be outside waiting for my girls to return safely.”
“Alright then. It has been hard for you.”
Seeing the other officers rejecting her lead, Ingrid didn’t see any reason to insist on her proposal. She had never been adept at expressing her opinions, thus the reason why she didn’t explain such crucial information, such as her students being imperial members of the Octavia Empire. If these group of officers knew that those students were the princesses from their empire, their attitude would probably be a lot different.
However, she couldn’t do anything else right now.
“Reporting! I have found another set of corpses. They belong to… the infiltrators.”
“What!? Where? What are you so nervous about? Have you not seen dead people before!?”
“It’s not that, Officer Gould. These people died… You will know once you see it.”
Officer Gould stared at the trembling messenger soldier with disdain before he led the other officers out of the conference tent. When they saw the infiltrators’ corpses that were brought in by the soldiers, they were all miserably pale. It was just a huge pile of bloody dismembered body parts.
“Officer Gould, this slicing wound doesn’t seem to be from human assassins. It looks like… it was done by demonic beings!”
“This… where is Officer Ingrid?”
“It looks like she rode away on the Radiant Holy Dragon. We don’t know where she went…”
“Hurry up and find her! If you can’t, then you can say goodbye to your position as Captain!”
It was at this moment, Officer Gould had realized the severity of the situation. If the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley had been successfully infiltrated by demonic beings, it was enough for him as the commanding officer to lose his head. This period of time was when the Dragon Race and the various imperial family members were here at the Holy Dragon Valley for vacation. If they were to witness the demonic beings invading the valley, he would have no way to cover up the truth.
The other officers immediately realized his strange thought and silently agreed. The bribed officers were especially pale as they stared at the bodies. If this matter is brought to the upper echelons and they investigate, none of them will be able to escape alive.
In the interior of the Holy Dragon Valley, Bella was traversing through the forest by herself while wearing the Dark Knight’s armor that carried a horrific aura. General magical beasts wouldn’t even dare approach her, but the magical beasts in the Bronte Holy Dragon Valley are different from the ones she’s encountered before. They had a certain level of wisdom that allowed them to know which humans must not be provoked.
In a tree not far behind Bella, a few secretive figures appeared and were quickly and silently killed by the shadow demons hiding behind them.
“Tambour’s subordinates are truly impressive. Good thing I don’t have to personally kill those assassins.”
When Bella stood in place, a black shadow drifted over and placed various types of maps in front of her. After the demonic beings killed the infiltrators that were near Irene, Lisha, and Luce, they looted all their belongings and handed them to Bella. As for infiltrating the Holy Dragon Valley… Bella never had such an intention. Due to selfish reasons, Bella had asked the Shadowless Demon Tambour to personally monitor the Beauty Dragon Knight Ingrid. Even though it was monitoring, only Bella would know if it carried the hidden meaning to protect her.
“Eh, an operation to capture the Dragon Girl! These… these guys are actually the Gentry Group.”
Bella picked up one of the scrolls and examined it to find that the infiltrators’ backgrounds weren’t just to simply hunt rare magical beasts. Bella stared at the scroll for some time before silently pocketing it. Bella read that they actually had such a sick plan! She then advanced while asking her subordinates to clear up the gentries’ corpses before leaving.